I-LAND: Manhattan in Monologue by Sonia Pilcer

I-LAND: Manhattan in Monologue

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Pilcer (Teen Angel, Maiden Rites) here creates an echo chamber of trendy Manhattan voices, in which crisscrossing monologues by city types--about love and marriage, fame and money--communicate the jittery, fingernail-deep Zeitgeist of the upscale 80's life. During a Saturday in Manhattan, a cast of 19 Manhattan characters zip to trendy locales--Bloomingdale's, the ""yupper"" West Side, etc.--pondering baby-boomer problems. Thus, we hear from Eliot, an attorney on the eve of marriage, and from Randee, Eliot's intended. Both are suffering from cold feet. In the course of the day, as part of a web of freaky little coincidences, they will recall lovers who are indirectly linked to one another (all of whom are busy monologuing about their own problems). For example, Trent, a cute young actor/waiter, is a bisexual who still drives Randee crazy. Trent, however, is busy worrying about his old roommate, a transsexual awaiting a sex-change operation. A strange coincidence, since Eliot and the transsexual separately remember a seduction that ended with Eliot running for his life. Randee and the transsexual share the same psychotherapist; this Dr. T. is obsessed with a hooker and would. be poetess, Ursula. Another twist: Ursula runs into Randee in a nail-care salon, and gives her an Asian potion to help her man perform. Inspired, Randee calls Eliot in the wee hours of the morning to have telephone sex, only to be hung up on--Ursula has arrived at Eliot's place as a bachelor gift. True to its title, this is self-absorbed stuff. Pilcer tries pearl-diving the shallows of upscale Manhattan and comes up only with clammy talk, oddly sterile and impersonal, like someone's nervous remarks in a bar.

Pub Date: Aug. 31st, 1987
Publisher: Ballantine